Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: July 07, 2017

Laurie Brown announces departure from CBC radio show The Signal

Television journalist Laurie Brown, who first made a name for herself on the Citytv program The NewMusic from 1985 to 1990, has announced her resignation as host of The Signal, a CBC Radio 2 show she has hosted for the past decade.

Ending with a flourish, Brown will embark on a farewell tour this summer that is to include stops at CBC in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. The farewells will be recorded and featured in her final show on September 2.

Motown from a Canadian perspective: Hitsville U.S. Eh!

"Hitsville U.S. Eh!", a one hour television documentary written and directed by Doug Thompson premiered earlier this week on Hollywood Suite and will be running throughout July and August.

"Hitsville U.S. Eh!" is Motown history from the perspective of Canadian film makers.  It was created and executive produced by Frank Bertolas (former Blue Ant Media executive), written and directed by Thompson.  Lightbox Entertainment is the Production Company and narration is by Carvin Winans of the Winans gospel family.  

Carvin has lived in Toronto with his family for several years and is an integral part of the Canadian musical community.

"Hitsville U.S. Eh!" features exclusive interviews with Motown legends Smokey Robinson and Martha Reeves as well as former Motown President Barney Ales, legendary Motown arranger Paul Riser, Dr. Mabel Johns (the first woman signed to Motown) as well as former CKLW DJ's Pat Holiday and Bill Gable, plus Tim Trombley (son of CKLW Music Director Rosalie).  "Hitsville U.S. Eh! also covers the 1967 Detroit riots from the Canadian perspective of two veteran newsmen who were there - Dick Smyth (former CKLW News Director) and Robert McBain (former Toronto Telegram reporter).

CHOM DJ Tootall to sign off after 40 years on Montreal radio

After 40 years at CHOM 97.7 FM., the popular DJ known as Tootall (born Robert Wagenaar) will spin his last disc at the end of September.

Tootall, one of Montreal’s best-loved and longest-serving disc jockeys, will retire on Sept. 29, the station’s owners announced on Wednesday. 

“Forty years into the game and his passion for music and his curiosity about new sounds, styles, and bands remain unmatched,” said Picard, CHOM’s music director — Katherine Wilton, Montreal Gazette

Red announces ‘I’m retiring. Again. No, Seriously

From Dr. Red Robinson’s Facebook page:

Thanks to all who have written to me about my impending retirement, including those who said "It's about time!!!"

The Museum of Vancouver is making a home for my large collection of memorabilia. At 80 I am fortunate to have had a very long run on radio and TV. Listeners and viewers have put up with me for a long time. Hell, I've been doing this for so long I am starting to get on my own nerves!

I am a person who can't sit still and I'm already working on a few projects. More on that later. As the old saying goes: "Old deejays never quit, they just change frequency."

June was a busy month. Old friend Grace McCarthy passed away and the provincial government properly held a state funeral. At the end of the impressive ceremony her coffin was put into a horse drawn hearse. A touching farewell to a great lady. It was an honour for me to be chosen as an honorary pallbearer... for something a little more upbeat, Michael Bublé's grandfather Midge’s 90 birthday celebration was held in New Westminster.

Michael's 2½ year old son Noah joined Daddy on stage and sang a bit. The young lad is a ham and enjoyed every moment! Noah's cancer is gone and to date he is clear of the disease. Carole and I were thrilled to be part of this family and friends gathering to honour granddad Midge. He is a positive force in this world and the family was not going to let the occasion pass without celebrating.

David Foster and Paul Anka joined Michael on stage and both saluted Midge on his 90th. It was a night to remember... to top it off I was invited by Mel Cooper to attend the BCBusiness Magazine networking event at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. This annual affair was hosted by magazine owner Peter Legge, who did a magnificent job interviewing David Foster. It was poignant and funny.

1953-2017 Radio legend Red Robinson hangs up his microphone

For the last several years Robinson has held down a Sunday slot on CISL. He celebrated his 80th birthday on air March 30.

But CISL was recently sold and will be changing formats from oldies to sports in September. So this week, Red decided it was time to finally retire for good.

“I’ll tell ya what did it to me,” he said.

“My grandson is 14. He’s always bugging me, ‘Grandpa when are you going to retire?’ I knew what he meant — spend more time with him. A couple of weeks ago I said ‘Aden, I’m retiring.’

“He said, ‘Grandpa, you mean we can spend more time together?’ That got to me. It’s the right move. You’ve got to go sometime, right?”

His last day will be Aug. 27 — John Mackie, Vancouver Sun

SoundCloud, which rose to stardom on Indie talent, lays off 173

Eric and I founded SoundCloud nearly 10 years ago as we saw a need for something that would enable artists to share and connect through music. As we hovered together back in 2008 to push the button that would make SoundCloud live for the entire world, we had no idea the impact our, then tiny, platform would have on the future of music culture, and millions of listeners and artists around the globe.

In the competitive world of music streaming, we’ve spent the last several years growing our business, and more than doubled our revenue in the last 12 months alone. However, we need to ensure our path to long-term, independent success. And in order to do this, it requires cost cutting, continued growth of our existing advertising and subscription revenue streams, and a relentless focus on our unique competitive advantage — artists and creators.

With more focus and a need to think about the long term, comes tough decisions. Today, after careful and painful consideration, we took the difficult step to let go of 173 SoundCloud staffers and consolidated the team into two offices: Berlin and New York. We are extremely grateful for the contributions of each and every staff member who will be leaving SoundCloud, and we wish all of them the best. Without them, we would not be where we are today.

By reducing our costs and continuing our revenue growth, we’re on our path to profitability and in control of SoundCloud’s independent future.

So what does this mean for SoundCloud? The SoundCloud platform listeners and artists love will remain available in more than 190 countries globally. SoundCloud will continue to be the place for what’s new, now and next in music, powered by the world’s most diverse music community. I look forward to sharing more about our future plans in the weeks and months ahead —Co-founder Alex Ljung, as printed on the company’s blog

Media News Digest: CP makes it Indigenous, Sportsnet 650 morning team, Order of Canada appointments

  • Canadaland did a tour of Canada this spring to promote its new book about Canada. The show in Montreal was recorded and has been posted to YouTube.
  • MobileSyrup has learned how Videotron is dealing with the CRTC-mandated shutdown of its Unlimited Music plan: It’s boosting subscribers’ data caps by the amount they used Unlimited Music at its peak. It’s not a perfect solution, but it will probably satisfy most consumers.
  • You can tell the online clickbait game has gotten ridiculous when one site sues another for regurgitating their regurgitated content — Fagstein (aka Steve Faguy)

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